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Advanced Materials

Self-Healable and Reprocessable Thermoset Polymer Networks

Inventors: Dr. Marek Urban and Dr. Siyang Wang

Market Overview

Thermosetting polymers are known for their excellent mechanical properties, thermal stability, and resistance to environmental stresses, making them ideal for numerous industrial applications.  However, the irreversible nature of their cross-linking poses a challenge for reprocessing and repair. To address this, there has been an increased need for the development of re-processable and self-healing thermosets.


Aerospace and defense, Medical Devices, Chemical Processing, Electronics and Semiconductor manufacturing, Automotive, Energy sector

Technical Summary:

Clemson researchers have developed fluorinated acrylic-based covalent adaptable networks (CANs) that combine re-processability and self-healing capabilities. These materials are synthesized by copolymerizing (2-acetoacetoxy)ethyl methacrylate (AAEMA), 2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate (TFEMA), and n-butyl acrylate (nBA), followed by cross-linking with tris(2-aminoethyl) amine (TREN). The resulting CANs exhibit a maximum stress at break of approximately 16 MPa and a storage modulus of around 2.6 GPa within the temperature range of -60 to 25°C. These materials can be fully reprocessed through compression molding at 120°C, maintaining their mechanical properties over multiple cycles. The self-healing mechanism is driven by dipolar interactions and conformational changes within the polymer structure, allowing the material to autonomously heal under ambient conditions. Furthermore, equipping fluorinated acrylic-based copolymers with dynamic crosslinks provides an opportunity for the development of a new class of thermoset networks with sustainable functions.


  • Reprocessability: Can be reprocessed multiple times without significant loss of mechanical properties, reducing waste.
  • Mechanical Performance: Maintains high mechanical strength and modulus, even after multiple reprocessing cycles.
  • Self-Healing: Capable of autonomously repairing damage at room temperature without external intervention.
  • Expanded Market: Opportunity for the development of a new class of sustainable thermoset networks.

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Technology Overview

State of Development

TRL 3/4

Patent Type



Advanced Materials

Serial Number


CURF Reference No.



Dr. Marek Urban and Dr. Siyang Wang

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Please put technology ID “2022-039” in subject line of email


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